A company recently sent me an email letting me know about some changes to the customer service staff. I was amazed to see that my email address had been shared with hundreds of others on the email list as the list had not been protected. Nowadays companies should know better than to share customer data like this. This incident made me think about how the dance teaching profession and especially how private dance teachers have to understand a much wider body of knowledge about so many things on the admin side of dance teaching. I hope you find the tip below for protecting email address lists useful.
Using the Bcc email facility
We all have obligations to do with data protection policies wherever we are based. Many of us did not have computers and email facilities to do the admin for our dance schools or departments when we started teaching. Today we do. Along with the technology that makes it so easy to share data comes greater obligations not to share data without the necessary consent. Sometimes though data is shared accidentally (and avoidable) because we did not know how to protect it.
Email is a great way to contact groups of students and many of us use it all the time. To ensure that we are not sharing email addresses that we shouldn’t be we can make use of the blind copy (Bcc) facility in the email software. I find that the easiest way to do this is to put my own email address in the To address line and instead of adding a list of email addresses to the carbon copy (Cc) line use the blind copy (Bcc) line. When you put your list of email addresses in the Bcc line each recipient will only see their own email details and not the details of the others on the list. You will receive a copy of the email because it is your email address in the To line.
Some email software programmes do not reveal the Ccc box by default in new email messages and you need to reveal it yourself. Bcc is often found under the ‘options’ menu – Click it to add a Bcc line. If it is not there and you do not know how to reveal the Bcc line then check your email software’s help facility.
Information about data protection for UK is available from the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO).